It didn’t take long for the UFC to find a replacement for Rich Franklin at UFC 148 after “Ace” agreed to fill in for an injured Vitor Belfort at UFC 147 against Wanderlei Silva, signing Patrick Cote to clash with former Strikeforce champion Cung Le at the July 7 event.

Cote has come out on top in a quartet of consecutive collisions including a recent knockout of Brazilian Gustavo Machado. The win improved his overall record to 17-7 and was his eleventh career stoppage. The bout will mark a third run for Cote in the UFC with his peak thus far coming in 2008 with five straight victories and a title-shot.

News of the match-up was first reported by MMAJunkie.

Le is 7-2 after coming to MMA later in life, debuting as a pro at age 34 with an impressive run in San Shou prior to signing with Strikeforce. All seven of his instances of success have involved a strike-based stoppage.

UFC 148 is headlined by Anderson Silva defending his middleweight belt against Chael Sonnen with other featured fights including Forrest Griffin-Tito Ortiz and Urijah Faber-Renan Barao.


MMATraining Take: I’m glad to see the UFC is giving Cote another shot. He got somewhat of a bum deal the last time around, shredding his knee in his title-fight, missing more than a year because of it, and then losing twice after the extended absence from the cage.